Historical & Species Roses




Beloved for centuries for their graceful beauty and full bloom, historic roses (by definition roses in existence before 1867, when ʻLa Franceʼ, the first hybridized tea rose emerged) recreate an old fashioned garden charm and bring back many memories of cherished gardens. These historic roses are riding a wave of immense popularity right now. This garden inherited these living horticultural treasures from our ancestors and are complemented with more modern roses to complete the collections. 

In the WRHS Herb Garden the collection of heritage roses includes many cultural origins: China, England, France, and others. The unforgettable true rose perfume, inherent beauty of form, softer hue of color, handsome foliage and very attractive hips are a few of the characteristics that attract the attention of members and visitors alike.  

The collection in this garden consists of Gallicas, Musks, Centifolias, Damasks, Noisettes, Bourbons, Portlands, Hybrid Perpetuals and others. Many species were planted when the WRHS Herb Garden was founded and still bloom every year. 

Many visitors to the WRHS Herb Garden come to see a specific rose when it is blooming. Interest in this historical collection gives meaning and emphasis to the mission of preserving and maintaining these heritage plants. The Historic Roses in the WRHS Garden have been given the recognition of the Herb Society of America as a Registered Collection. This is one of the very few collections in the country given this recognition by the Herb Society of America. There is a marker in the Rose Garden designating the 2012 award. 

Click below to enjoy images of the Historic Roses Garden.

Photos by Kate Williams 
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